RMI Acouswitch IQ DI review

Plush acoustic DI/preamp

  • £400
  • €549
  • $799
The RMI Acouswitch IQ DI is a high-end preamp and 'brain' for an acoustic pedalboard

MusicRadar Verdict

A superb design especially for the acoustic musician, with flexible loops and good DI facilities.


  • +

    Clean, high fidelity sound. Build quality.


  • -

    It's a little pricey, but definitely justifiable for pro and serious acoustic players.

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With a slightly larger footprint than an iPad, the Acouswitch IQ DI is a beautifully clean design. It was conceived by Jacques Ruppert of Ruppert Musical Instruments (RMI) and is made by Lehle, incorporating much of the company's style as well as its switching/transformer technology.

You'll find three large push buttons with bright-blue status LEDs, a row of rotary knobs that sit flush with a raised section (to protect them and stop them moving in a gigbag or the like), and all the input features you need along the top edge. On the right side is the DI output with push buttons for ground lift, input pad and pre/post selection.

"We used a variety of guitars and effects and the Acouswitch sounded very clean in every scenario"

You have two inputs for two instruments or a dual source pickup. Channel A has volume and three-band EQ with parametric midrange. Channel B goes straight through and only the Body Contour, a combined narrow notch filter or 'body' boost with frequency and level controls, is shared.

Along with its line and tuner outputs, the Acouswitch also incorporates a serial effects loop or a mix loop, the latter with level and on/off switch that doubles as a clean level boost when not in use.

In Use

We used a variety of guitars and effects for this review, and the Acouswitch sounded hi-fi and very clean in every scenario.

The mix loop was especially useful for noisy effects, sending the correct input level to defeat noise. The Body Contour control took care of most feedback issues, and the EQ is wide and transparent.

As a pro-level 'brain' for an acoustic pedalboard, it stands alone in the market. Highly recommended.

Dave Burrluck

Dave Burrluck is one of the world’s most experienced guitar journalists, who started writing back in the '80s for International Musician and Recording World, co-founded The Guitar Magazine and has been the Gear Reviews Editor of Guitarist magazine for the past two decades. Along the way, Dave has been the sole author of The PRS Guitar Book and The Player's Guide to Guitar Maintenance as well as contributing to numerous other books on the electric guitar. Dave is an active gigging and recording musician and still finds time to make, repair and mod guitars, not least for Guitarist’s The Mod Squad.